E‑Commerce Time‑Savers

Use these powerful automations to save time and convert more first‑time buyers into repeat customers.

Sales and promotional events can bring many new visitors to your e-commerce store. But beyond gaining first-time customers, these moments can cultivate a lasting interest in your brand. By learning about these shoppers, you can design targeted, personalized marketing that encourages them to become loyal customers.

This series shows you how to do so quickly by building an automated Customer Journey that collects first hand information about your audience through a survey, lets you send personalized marketing messages, and encourages repeat purchases. The best part? You can build each of the 3 steps in your Customer Journey quickly (and save even more time in the future).

Before your next sales event, follow this 3-part series to create a Customer Journey that helps convert new store visitors into repeat customers.

Part 1

Use This Quick Survey to Learn About Your Newest Customers

Part 2

Build an Automated Customer Journey For First-Time Buyers

Part 3

Turn First-Time Buyers Into Repeat Customers With This Reward

Part 1

Use This Quick Survey to Learn About Your Newest Customers

When you launch a promotion or sale for your e-commerce business, you’ll likely see an influx of new visitors to your website. It’s wise to use this moment to learn what you can about them, so that you can send them personalized marketing in the future (and encourage them to become loyal repeat customers).

Among the best ways to quickly learn about your new visitors is to invite them to sign up for your mailing list, and then immediately follow their signup with an automated email survey.

When customers tell you about themselves in a survey, the information you collect is extremely valuable. It’s an opportunity for them to share not only what they want you to know about themselves but also what they want from a brand like yours. Collecting data this way is especially important as people become more concerned with protecting their personal information.

Why you should build this survey before your next promotion

Promotions can bring in a lot of new customers. Collecting customer feedback during a sale can allow you to modify your marketing strategies to be more effective. Asking how they heard of your store or what channels brought them there will also allow you to make informed decisions for future campaigns. Plus, a survey demonstrates that you care about providing your newest customers with a positive experience, and it provides you with an opportunity to offer them an incentive to make additional purchases.

How to build your new customer survey

Follow the video below for step-by-step directions to create a survey for your newest customers. Here’s what this survey will do:

  • Collect customer-provided data to help personalize your marketing
  • Tag new customers with their birthday month and trigger a customized email campaign
  • Record which marketing channels brought new customers to your store
  • Segment customers based on their experience with your product

Copywriting tip: When creating surveys, start with a very simple question that your respondent will be able to answer instantly. You want them to begin with momentum and get to the second question without any difficulties. Avoid open-ended questions.

Build a survey, then put it to use

Beginning to collect data that’s provided by your customers is key to a proactive strategy for reaching your audience with effective, targeted content.

As you collect this data, you can begin to use it to create automations, campaigns, and personalized shopping experiences. As your audience grows, consider creating another survey so that you can understand how they’ve evolved over time.

The next step is to build an automation that sends this survey to customers who visited your website during your promotion. That’s covered in Part 2: Build a Customer Journey to Automate Your New Subscriber Survey.

Part 2

Build an Automated Customer Journey For First‑Time Buyers

Running a promotion can be a great way to reach new customers.

Therefore, it’s also an opportunity to grow your audience. But a dramatic increase in first-time shoppers can create some challenges for your e-commerce store. For example:

  • The quality of your customers might not be as high as before the sale, if they were driven to buy by discounts, not the need to solve a pain point.
  • An increase in new customers using your products could lead to an increase in customer support requests that you might not have the capacity to handle.

Segmenting your customers during your next promotion can make it easier not only to prevent potential problems, but also to take advantage of your audience growth.

The key is to learn what you can about people who join your audience soon after they join it. Using Mailchimp’s Customer Journey builder, it’s as simple as automating a survey to go out to new customers.

By automating delivery of the survey you built in Part 1 of this series, you can collect valuable customer-provided data and segment your new customers into tiers based on the quality of their engagement. In other words, your new customers will be automatically prompted to tell you about themselves and how interested they are in your business—that way, you know how to market to them in the future.

Here’s how to create a Customer Journey that automatically sends a survey to your new customers.

Automate your survey with Customer Journey Builder

Every time a new customer signs up for your email list, you can send them the new customer survey you created in Part 1. To do so, you’ll create an automation using Mailchimp’s Customer Journey builder, which is available with the Essentials Plan and above.

Setting this automation up before your next sale or promotion will ultimately help you save time by accomplishing a few important marketing tasks at once. First, it will help you keep your audience clean—which means it’s filled with people who really want to hear from you—so that you can maintain email engagement. It does this by segmenting new customers based on their interest and interactions with your business. This lets you invest your time in marketing to those who care most—and are more likely to make another purchase.

Second, the survey gathers feedback on which marketing channels draw new customers to your store. Simply asking, “How did you hear about us?” gives you a precious insight into the best marketing channels for growing your audience.

Next steps

Now you’ve created and turned on an automation that will send new customers a survey one week after they make a purchase. Based on their responses, they’ll be tagged with the month of their birthday, the channel where they heard about your business, and a Net Promoter Score or a rating of how likely they are to recommend your company to a friend or family member.

To get the most out of this automation, you can offer new customers an incentive to complete the survey, segment the respondents based on their feedback, and then add some if/else rules to organize your audience based on what you’ve learned about them. We’ll cover how to do all of this in Part 3.

Part 3

Turn First‑Time Buyers Into Repeat Customers With This Reward

After a big sale or promotion draws to a close, your job as an e-commerce retailer is far from over. It’s essential to learn about and engage new customers who purchased from you for the first time during your sale.

That’s why in Parts 1 and 2 of this series, you built a new customer survey and automated it—to gather valuable information about new customers and create personalized Customer Journeys.

Now it’s time to segment your audience based on how they engaged with your new subscriber survey and what they told you if they completed it. This step will automatically follow up with first-time customers a week after their purchase, tag them based on their answers to your survey, and reward those who finish their survey with a 20% discount on their next full-priced purchase.

With your audience automatically tagged and organized, you’ll free up valuable time to invest in sending more targeted, personalized marketing. Here’s how to build an automation that segments your newest customers based on their survey responses and encourages them to purchase from you again.

Add an automatic follow-up to your Customer Journey

Here’s what your completed Customer Journey will do:

  • Automatically follow up with first-time customers a week after their purchase
  • Tag them based on their answers to your survey
  • Reward those who finish their survey with a 20% discount

Next steps

After completing all 3 parts of this series, you’ll have an automated system to learn about new customers, personalize your marketing to them, and encourage them to buy from you again. Be sure to set it up before your next sale to maximize the customer information you collect and the opportunities it presents.

Not only will your new Customer Journey help convert prospects into loyal customers, you can also use what you learn to inform your marketing strategies, product development, customer service, branding, and communication strategy moving forward. Plus, you can continue to make the most of what you’ve learned about your new customers by implementing other pre-built Customer Journeys to achieve your marketing goals.